Moisturising

Virginia Stone – ‘Eyes’ for Kavesi


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When you’re searching out skincare items, often the three categories you’ll see are ‘dry’, ‘normal’, and ‘oily’. They’re appear all encapsulating, or so it seems. Some of us with ‘combination’ skin at The Amazing Blog and frequently struggle to find the right cleanser or moisturiser that won’t make our skin greasy or dry. The latest product we tried is from Virginia Stone it brings about the idea that finding the right products for your skin may be based on your skin tone rather than these three general categories.

Virginia Stone built her brand on the foundation of ‘passion, purpose, and an unyielding desire to innovate and inspire’. She set out to revolutionise the skincare industry by creating a sustainable luxury brand and adhering to three core values of people, planet, and passion. Virginia Stone, as a company, dedicates itself to global social and environmental sustainability and all of its products are fair-trade, eco-friendly, and vegan. What drew us to this brand was its ethos. It felt simple categories like ‘dry’, ‘normal’, and ‘oily’ do not account for certain skin-tone-specific characteristics such as skin density and sensitivity, SPF requirements, and potency tolerance levels. So, Virginia Stone created three collections: Kavesi for fair skin tones, Jasari for medium skin tones, and Odaja for dark skin tones. We felt these groupings were less arbitrary and more encapsulating, especially if you have ‘normal’ or ‘combination’ skin. 

We tried their ‘Eyes’ for Kavesi in Sand , a 3-in-1 superfood cream with five layers (Butter, Nectar, Tea Syrup, Corrective Complex, Elixir) of antioxidants, vitamins, and nutrients. The formula is also pH balanced and oxygenated to protect your skin from UV rays and pollution, improving your skin’s elasticity and lightening dark shadows. It is designed to stimulate cell renewal, increase blood flow, and improve circulation specifically for fair skin, which is highly sensitive and allergy prone. When we used it, we saw diminished fine lines as well as less puffy and brighter skin like we had used a jade roller. But what stood out to us was the cream’s texture. It’s solid, and you can’t dip your finger into it, but the warmth of your finger picks up the right amount of the product that feels smoother than butter and leaves your skin feeling the same way. The cream is oilier than typical moisturisers, yet it doesn’t feel sticky and spreads well. It leaves your skin feeling smooth and matte, which makes the cream perfect to use as a primer during the day, and nourishes for night time use. 

Finally, we cannot go through this post without mentioning the intricate packaging. The cream comes in a cube that Virginia Stone calls ‘The Luxador’. It’s 100 per cent recyclable concrete stone and has thermal insulating properties to protect the cream’s active ingredients and maintain its longevity. The Luxador is engraved with the company’s simple logo and pattern and has a magnetic stone lid. It’s quite solid and heavy, so be careful if you travel with it or keep it on your bathroom counter for décor and safekeeping.

You can buy ‘Eyes’ for Kavesi (15ml) here for $185. The price is quite high, but you don’t need very much and could spot treat certain areas rather than put it all over your face. 

Friday Favourites – Cleansers

As we all know the key essential to any good skin care routine is to use a gentle and effective cleanser, not only to remove the daily grime but the residue of our makeup. However, during our research for this feature, we at The Amazing Blog found that there were quite a few readily available high street brands, but they were mainly water-based with chemicals. This combination strips your skin of its natural oils, leaving your face feeling tight and dry rather than supple and refreshed. That is why we wanted to share some of our Friday Favourites which are the latest #amazingfinds for oil-based cleansers and cleansing balms. We know what you’re probably thinking: ‘Oil? Won’t that clog up my skin?’ Rest assured we’ve tried and tested our choices. We all have very different skin types here at The Amazing Blog ranging from very dry to extremely oily and none of these cleansers clogged our pores.

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The first #amazingfind, we found was the Jane Apothecary Soothing Cleansing Balm. This Spanish-based company was founded by Elena Padilla, a biologist and cosmetics expert, after she began breaking out when she turned 30 years old. Jane Apothecary is an award winning brand (see 2019 Beauty Shortlist here) that we have fallen in love with, and recently wrote about their Restoring Eye &  Lip Serum . Elena soon discovered the benefits of vegetable oils and plants to soothe skin as well as other women who were in a similar situation as herself. This led her to create all-natural products that ‘care for and calm the skin of women over 30 years’ while providing hydration and preventing ageing.

The Cleansing Balm’s oil and vegetable wax base gives the product a thick texture and melts in your hands to create a cleansing oil. It has marigold extract, chamomile, and aloe vera to soothe and soften your skin along with bio shea butter to help protect your skin’s natural oils. After using this product, your skin won’t feel greasy, but perfectly moisturised and clean. What made this cleansing balm worthy of a lot of love at the Beauty Shortlist Awards is that it has been specially formulated for sensitive skin as well as redness- and rosacea-prone skin while smelling fresh. Many products that treat skin conditions often smell like a hospital or have no scent. Jane Apothecary uses a mix of lemongrass, orange, and lavender essential oils to give the balm a signature strong lemongrass scent that has aromatherapeutic properties to help you relax while cleansing your face.

If you want extra soft skin, you can leave a small layer of the cleansing balm on for 20 minutes before removing it with warm water and the organic cotton wipe provided. Only a small dollop of this product is needed each time you cleanse your face, so we can safely say the price is worth what you get. You can purchase the Soothing Cleansing Balm (60ml) here for 35.54€


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The next cleansing balm we have for you is the Nourish Cleanse Melt: Rose & Camellia. This product may look or sound familiar because we reviewed the Botanicals Nourishing Face Balm in the same beautiful scent. We’ve found and fallen in love with many products from Botanicals (check out our brand directory here) and the Nourishing Face Balm falls into the same pattern.

The company is rooted in the ‘fundamental belief that nature knows best’ and this cleansing balm has 100 per cent natural ingredients. It is also cruelty-free, vegan, and certified organic. The cleanser contains absolutely no water and is oil-based, which helps retain and maintain your skin’s natural oils rather than dry out your face. It can be used on all skin types, but the natural oils are especially useful for hydrating and healing normal-to-dry mature skin. The formula combines the oils with shea butter and green tea extract to dissolve even stubborn waterproof mascara after a long day and leave your skin feeling soft like a baby’s the next morning. What makes this balm different is that Botanicals’ cleansing balms work deep into your pores to remove any impurities, which balance and brighten your skin. While many oil-based products scare people away, this cleansing balm leaves you feeling moisturised but not greasy.

See for yourself why this cleansing balm won for Best Organic Facial Skincare at the Natural and Organic Awards. You can purchase it here (60g) for £26.  

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The final product we have for you this Friday is the Joji Natural Frankincense and Sandalwood Oil Cleanser. We discovered this indie beauty brands earlier this year at a trade beauty show. The motto of Joji Natural is ‘Natural without compromise’. The company was founded in 2010 and is dedicated to creating handmade organic products that are effective, sustainable, cruelty-free, and fair trade.

 The oil cleanser is made of 100 per cent plant-based materials and is marketed as ‘a meditation in a bottle’. After using it, we can see why. As the name says, the product has frankincense and sandalwood. These are both natural oils that have immense therapeutic effects, leaving you less stressed and creating positive well-being. The formula also has a unique mix of jojoba, sweet almond, and apricot kernel oils, which soothe and moisturise skin without clogging your pores. This oil cleanser is essential in scrubbing away makeup and pollutants from the day, unlike regular cleansers. Many of the ingredients also have natural properties to fight bacteria, leaving your skin extra clean.

You can remove all of the cleanser with a warm cloth or leave some excess for your skin to soak up the all-natural oils, as recommended by Joji Natural. You can purchase the Frankincense and Sandalwood Oil Cleanser (50ml) here for £16.

Whether or not you have already made the switch to oil cleansers, please keep these products in mind not just for the summer but all year round. As mentioned earlier, they will not clog your pores or leave your skin feeling dry. However, what we like is that they all leave a nice layer of moisture giving you a glowy and goddess-like skin. Go try!

Love Sun Body - SPF 50 Fragrance Free

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With the UK experiencing its hotter and hotter summers apply a high SPF is an essential part our daily routine, not only our faces but also our bodies. From recycling to using reusable straws, we can change little things in our day-to-day lives for the better, including changing what sunscreen we use. According to the Environmental Working Group,  the chemical-filler oxybenzone which is widely found in non-mineral sunscreens can cause bleaching and deformation to the ocean’s reefs. With that in mind, many began talking about the need for reef-safe SPF, including the state of Hawaii who recently banned any sunscreen that is not deemed safe for the ocean. Once we heard this, at The Amazing Blog we started the hunt for a summer sunscreen that is free from these harmful chemicals. When we read all the rave reviews about Love Sun Body’s range of natural mineral sunscreens, we knew that we had to try.

The founder is Dr. Terry Zickerman is a former banker who returned to his passion for science, biology and healthy living. Love Sun Body was born out of a conversation at the beach in Point Pleasant in New Jersey. After six years dedicated to research and formulation, this US skincare brand Love Sun Body made its debut last summer. Instead of the chemical UVA and UVB filters found in most sunscreens, Love Sun Body’s sun protectants contain zinc oxide and titanium dioxide to physically block out the rays instead of turning the UV into heat as chemical filters usually do. The ingredients found in their sunscreens are water-resistant and safely yet effectively protect you from the sun. Love Sun Body are also the first U.S. sunscreen brand that is internationally certified by Ecocert Cosmos Natural. While we wished we could try all of Love Sun Body’s products, they kindly sent us their SPF 50 Fragrance Free sunscreen to try. Known fact: Mineral sunscreens do not penetrate the skin – they sit on top and act as a barrier – whereas chemical sunscreens absorb into the skin. Oxybenzone, one of these chemical sunscreen ingredients, is added to 70% of non-mineral sunscreens and, in a study of 2500 Americans, the CDC found Oxybenzone in 96% of the participants bodies.

In addition to being fragrance-free, Love Sun Body’s SPF 50 sunscreen contains 100% natural ingredients that won’t irritate eyes or break out your skin. Unlike other mineral sunscreens, the SPF 50 sunscreen isn’t chalky and dries into a sheer matte finish. Inactive ingredients found in the sunscreen like almond and sunflower oils also make sure your skin stays moisturised. The sunscreen has also proven to be non-comedogenic, so no need to worry about your pores clogging or forming acne. Before taking a dip this summer, make sure to use Love Sun Body’s SPF 50 as you would any sunscreen and re-apply every 80 minutes. SPF 30 sunscreens filter out up to 97% of the sun’s UV radiation while SPF 50 sunscreens filter out up to 98%.For everyday use, we like to apply a small amount of the sunscreen over our favourite moisturiser or serum. If you want to protect both your skin and the environment, purchase a 100 ml bottle for $21 or a 200ml bottle for $32 on the Love Sun Body website here or on Amazon here.

 

Eleni & Chris - KeraMin Strengthening Shampoo & Conditioner and BoostaMin Instant Hair Treatment

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Regular readers of The Amazing Blog will know that we're fans of the Scandinavian brand Eleni and Chris. We have recently reviewed their skincare products, the Bio-Cellulose Age Renewal Face and Eye Mask, and had the chance to try their ColourPro Shampoo and Conditioner and ColourPro Leave-In Treatment Spray in 2017.  

So when we had the  opportunity to try latest lauch KeraMin Strengthening Shampoo and Conditioner as well as the BoostaMin Instant Hair Treatment. We grabbed at it with both hands! The shampoo and conditioner both have the brand’s signature ingredient: cloudberries. These small orange berries are native to cool temperate regions of the earth and have been called "Scandinavian gold" as they are high in magnesium, calcium, and vitamins A, B, C, E. These elements, coupled with proteins and moisture, help strengthen and rebuild hair from within. Keratin in the Strengthening Shampoo additionally repairs hair while carefully selected proteins in the Strengthening Conditioner add extra softness. After using this duo, your hair will look stronger and healthier.

Whereas The BoostaMin Instant Hair Treatment should be put in towel-dried hair after shampoo but before conditioner 1-2 times a week for the maximum effect of strong and radiant hair. This product is named rightly so because keratin, cloudberry, and other ingredients combine to create an immediate effect — leaving your hair smoother and shinier than it was minutes before. It works on all hair types and it’s paraben free. On top of that, it comes in individual 20ml packs  ready to throw in your bag and take on your travels. Afterall we all know how sun, sea and sand plays havoc with our crowning-glory!

Whether you need to repair your hair from heat damage or want to maintain your locks, these products are perfect additions to your shower. You can purchase the Shampoo here for €26 and the Conditioner here for €28 or buy both for €50. You can buy single packs of the hair treatment here for €8 or a pack of six for €44. All products are in Euros but they do ship to the UK. Also by the time this post goes live, it might well be included with the rest of the haircare products in £ on FeelUnique.com

Skin Academy - Pure Range

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While there are many paraben, sulphate and cruelty beauty products out in the market, there aren’t many skincare brands that are both colour and fragrance free. For The Amazing Blog readers that have a sensitive skin, we have found an entire skincare range that is free from any irritating chemicals and scents. Manchester-based beauty brand Skin Academy has developed the six-product Pure range that leaves your skin feeling replenished and nourished - all at an affordable price.

Skin Academy’s Pure range contains products for every step in your skincare routine and that are great for all-skin types. The range contains a Cleansing Facial Scrub, Cleansing Facial Wash, Moisturising Eye Cream, Daily Moisturiser, Cleansing Micellar Water and two Soothing Sheet Masks. All six products contain two key non-irritants: Aloe vera and green tea extract, that soothe, cool and protect the skin. Skin Academy prides itself on offering ‘incredibly high quality skincare at extremely affordable prices’ and after trying the Pure range first hand, we can completely recommend their products for anyone who is looking for a brand that is gentle to your skin and kind to your wallet.

The first product of the line, the Cleansing Facial Wash is gentle cleanse for everyday use that provides great results.  In addition to cleansing the skin, this gel-based facial wash can remove all make up as well.  If you want something more exfoliating, the Pure Cleansing Facial Scrub removes any dead skin or impurities to reveal smoother skin. Since the facial scrub is a little harsher, Skin Academy recommends only using this scrub for a maximum of twice a week.  After cleansing the skin with the wash or the scrub, apply a thin layer of the Daily Moisturiser to your face and neck. In addition to the aloe vera and green tea extract, the moisturiser contains Glycerin, Shea Butter, Pro-Vitamin B5 and even SPF 15 and UVA-UVB filters that work together to moisturise and protect skin from any sun damage.  Next, the application of their Moisturising Eye Cream which soothes any puffiness while hydrating the skin around the eyes. After those long days that leave you too exhausted to do your full skin care routine, the Pure Cleansing Micellar Water is the perfect solution to do a ‘one swipe’ to remove the day’s makeup and grime, while softening the skin in the process.   The last product of the range doesn’t need to be used daily, the set of two Pure Soothing Sheet Masks are a great pick-me-up to lock-in moisture and leave you feeling pampered.  After removal of the mask after 20 to 30 minutes, the Soothing Sheet Mask leaves your skin feeling glowing and fresh without the added redness.

If you’re wanting to pamper your skin but not wanting to break the bank in the process, Skin Academy’s Pure Range is available to purchase here products price range is from £4 - £14 each.